Support TADEX to bolster an inclusive digital ecosystem: president

Jakarta (ANTARA) – Indonesian President Joko Widodo has invited all parties to support the existence of a digital platform created by the Indonesian nation’s Digital Exchange (TADEX) to encourage an inclusive digital ecosystem.

The head of state extended the invitation during his virtual remarks at the TADEX launch event witnessed through the Zoom application in Jakarta, Tuesday.

“We must support the work of this nation’s children and make the best use of it to encourage an inclusive digital ecosystem and build innovative and transparent digital advertising while still prioritizing the quality of delivering messages to the public,” the president remarked.

Widodo welcomed the TADEX platform that is the result of collaboration among the Press Council, Taskforce Media Sustainability, and Telkomgroup.

TADEX is a technological innovation for the media industry, especially advertising, the president noted.

“I believe TADEX will offer a new lease of life as it offers sustainable digital advertising business capital, opening up several new and beneficial opportunities for advertisers, publishers, marketers, and other stakeholders,” Widodo expounded.

The head of state views that the TADEX will offer an important momentum to create new leaps, give rise to a better digital ecosystem, and make Indonesia the country with the largest economic power in Southeast Asia.

The Indonesian government is targeting to integrate nearly 30 million small- and medium-scale enterprises (MSMEs) into the digital ecosystem by 2024, Cooperative, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises Minister Teten Masduki earlier remarked.

At a webinar here on Tuesday, Masduki affirmed that the number of MSMEs in the digital ecosystem is currently pegged at 13.5 million.

“As of 2024, some 30 million MSMEs will transform into the digital ecosystem. Currently, 13.5 million SMEs are onboard the digital world,” he pointed out.

Masduki highlighted the government’s current focus on supporting the transformation of SMEs in the agriculture sector.

The government would thereafter shift its focus to traditional markets and traders across Indonesia.

“We have more than 14 thousand traditional markets and some 12.6 million traders. We will prepare them to enter the digital ecosystem,” Masduki stated. (INE)

Source: Antara News

VP calls for innovation, research on sharia economy at varsities

Jakarta (ANTARA) – Indonesian Vice President Ma’ruf Amin has asked public and private universities to scale up innovation and research related to sharia economy and finance.

“Educational institutions with sharia economy study programs are hoped to carry out studies and research to boost innovation and (bring about) further development in Indonesia’s sharia economy and finance,” said Amin at the virtual launch of two textbooks on sharia economy on Tuesday.

Joining the launch from Jakarta, he said sharia economy and finance are among the current priorities of government programs that are seeking to achieve a new flow of the national economy.

To strengthen the ecosystem in the sector, the government needs more quality human resources that can be developed through university education, he added.

Therefore, he urged all higher education institutions to develop appropriate curricula, in accordance with the conditions of sharia economic and financial development in Indonesia.

“One of the determining factors for the creation of quality human resources based on sharia economics and finance is through education that is supported by the curriculum and also the right textbooks for teaching Islamic economics and finance,” he explained.

Two books were launched at Tuesday’s event — the Internship Guide Book and the Text Book for Sharia Economy. The Vice President lauded the National Committee for Sharia Economics and Finance (KNEKS) as well as the 10 universities that provided a reference for sharia economic education curriculum in Indonesia for the books.

“I convey my greatest appreciation and gratitude to KNEKS and the 10 universities in Indonesia for their achievements and successes in the effort to formulate and harmonize the curriculum of the sharia economics study program,” he remarked.

The University of Indonesia, Airlangga University, Padjajaran University, Bogor Agricultural University, Indonesian Education University, Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University Jakarta, Sunan Kalijaga State Islamic University, Ar-Raniry State Islamic University Banda Aceh, Indonesian Islamic University, and Institute of Islamic Religion Tazkia were involved in the preparation of the two books. (INE)

Source: Antara News

Indonesia records US$623 million trade surplus with Switzerland

Jakarta (ANTARA) – Indonesia recorded a surplus of US$623 million in its trade with Switzerland in the initial five months of 2021 despite the global economy having shown no signs of recovery owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Indonesia’s trade performance with Switzerland improved in May 2021 after bilateral trade decreased in the previous months, the Indonesian Embassy in Bern noted in a press statement issued on Tuesday.

According to the Swiss Federal Customs Administration (FCA), Indonesia’s exports to Switzerland had reached US$782 million during the January-May 2021 period, while its imports from the European country stood at US$159 million.

Consequently, Indonesia clocked a surplus of US$623 million over the period of time.

“This is good news. Despite a downward trend in global trade, Indonesia is still able to record a surplus in its trade with Switzerland. We are optimistic of Indonesia being able to maintain a surplus in its trade with Switzerland in future,” Indonesian Ambassador to Switzerland and Liechstentein Muliaman Hadad stated.

The trade surplus reflected a bright point amid the sluggish global economy due to the COVID-19 pandemic, he remarked.

“As a country with a strong economy, Switzerland is also affected by the pandemic that has an impact on its economic growth. This is because Switzerland is an export-oriented country,” he stated.

According to the Swiss Coordinating Ministry for Economy, the Swiss economy contracted 0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2021 after recording a 0.1-percent growth in the previous quarter. Overall, the trade sector contracted 4.8 percent.

Indonesia’s exports to Switzerland comprised jewelry, footwear, non-woven and woven fabrics, electronic goods, coffee, furniture, and organic chemicals.

Source: Antara News

Sharia economy main pillar of economic recovery: Finance Minister

Jakarta (ANTARA) – Sharia economy and finance are playing an important role in the economy, particularly in the wake of the pandemic, and have become among the main supporting pillars of economic recovery, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati has said.

“(Sharia economy and finance are needed) Not only to expedite the economic recovery process, but also to support Indonesia’s economic growth in order to be equitable and in accordance with the sustainable principles,” Sri Mulyani Inoted during the launch of Buku Teks Ekonomi Syariah here on Tuesday.

Sharia economic values can boost the national economy and ensure fair and equitable access in all aspects, especially in terms of education, health, and inclusive economic welfare, she highlighted.

The sharia redistribution mechanism refers to a social safety net system that, in Islamic fundamentals, teaches to always care and pay attention to the poor and vulnerable groups, she explained.

This value is in line with the goal of social justice for all the people of Indonesia and in accordance with the government policy design for building a social safety net through several social assistance programs, she said.

The social safety net program was designed to help boost the capability of the weak, poor, and vulnerable groups to enable them to catch up with other groups, she stated.

“This will also strengthen the social security and Indonesia’s economy,” she pointed out.

In addition, the risk sharing-based sharia financial system can also help build financial system stability since it shuns excessive risk in an attempt to realize sustainable economic growth, she said.

“Excessive risk-taking and imprudent risks will not be able to create economic crises (under a sharia financial system),” she added.

Sharia economic principles are aligned with the four main pillars of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that cover the human development aspect, social strength, economy sector, and environment protection, the minister informed.

Seeing the sharia economy’s potential as one of the new economic growth sources, the government is committed to developing the sharia economy and finance in Indonesia, she stated.

Her statement mirrored President Joko Widodo’s directives that Indonesia become the main driver of the sharia economy by exploiting its huge potential in the financial market.

“So, Indonesia will not only be the target market and halal industrial products of other countries,” Indrawati remarked. (INE)

Source: Antara News

Marine Affairs Ministry upbeat of economic recovery with rising export

Jakarta (ANTARA) – The Marine Affairs and Fisheries (KKP) Ministry is sanguine that rising exports in the marine and fisheries sector, in accordance with a spike in global demand, could increase national economic performance amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The marine and fisheries sector recorded positive performance for the first five months of 2021,” Director General of Strengthening the Competitiveness of Marine and Fishery Products, Artati Widiarti, stated here on Monday.

Trade balance in this sector also recorded a surplus of US$1.9 billion, up 3.72 percent, from the corresponding period in the previous year.

Cumulatively, the export value of fishery products during the January-May period had reached US$2.1 billion, an increase of 4.94 percent as compared to the same period in 2020.

“We need to be grateful for this (achievement), and it should strengthen our belief that the marine and fisheries sector can improve the economy in the midst of a pandemic,” Widiarti remarked.

Widiarti affirmed that her staff had played an active role in boosting exports, including through efforts to establish communication with Indonesian representatives in various countries to facilitate the requirements of exporters.

Moreover, her staff had striven to reduce export barriers and problems by taking various precautionary steps and establishing communication with competent authorities, especially in the Chinese and US markets.

The high export value came from the main commodities, including shrimp, which contributed US$865.9 million, or 41 percent of the total export value, followed by tuna-skipjack-mackarel tuna, as much as US$269.5 million, or 12.7 percent of the total export value; as well as squid–cuttlefish–octopus commodities that contributed US$223.6 million, or 10.6 percent of the total export value.

In the meantime, Indonesia’s main export destination country was the United States, with a contribution of US$934.1 million, or 44.2 percent of the total export value; followed by China at US$311.2 million, or 14.7 percent; and other ASEAN countries that contributed nearly US$230.7 million, or 10.9 percent.

“The increase in Indonesia’s export value was driven by heightened demand in several major export destination countries, especially in the US market,” Widiarti pointed out.

Marine Affairs and Fisheries Minister Sakti Wahyu Trenggono had earlier expressed optimism that with full support for the national shrimp export increase program, Indonesia is projected to dominate the global shrimp market.

Trenggono noted that shrimp was a highly sought-after fishery commodity in the global market. During the 2015-2019 period, the market demand for shrimp was the second-highest after salmon.

During the 2015-2020 period, Indonesia had also contributed to meeting demand in the global shrimp market by an average of 6.9 percent annually.

To support the high demand, Minister Trenggono highlighted several programs being prepared by the ministry to boost national shrimp production and exports, including revitalizing ponds by building infrastructure or facilities that can be used as pilot areas for shrimp and simplification of shrimp farming business licensing.

Trenggono also drew attention to the construction of a Model Shrimp Estate for shrimp cultivation from upstream to downstream. Shrimp Estate is an adequate-scale shrimp breeder whose cultivation process is in one area with a production process that utilizes technology, so that the results can be optimal.

In addition, the breeding process can protect the shrimp from disease and is also more environment-friendly, so that a sustainable breeding process can be maintained.


Source: Antara News

Recycling industry processing just one-third of nation’s waste: govt

Jakarta (ANTARA) – The domestic recycling industry has the capacity to process just two million tons of plastic waste out of the 6.8 million tons of waste produced in the country, a government official has said.

“Only two million tons could be processed, it would need more investment to process the remaining four million tons,” according to R Hendro Martono, head of the Center for Green Industry, Standardization and Industrial Service Policy, Industry Ministry.

Investment would also be needed to reduce plastic waste dumped into the ocean, he said during a training session for journalists, organized online by the Greenaration Foundation here on Monday.

The recycling industry in Indonesia comprises one thousand companies, with total investment amounting to 5.15 trillion Indonesian rupiahs, he disclosed.

Indonesia’s recycling industry still has the potential to absorb up to 3.3 million of the workforce, Martono said.

In addition to plastic waste, the country has the potential to develop paper, textile, iron and steel waste recycling, he observed.

Martono admitted there are challenges to improving waste management and implementing a circular economy. “First, (building) consumers’ awareness to use consumption goods wisely, to dump waste or garbage wisely,” he pointed out.

Another challenge is implementing an integrated system for waste sorting, collection, and transportation for recycling, he added.

Next is issuing of licenses for processing toxic waste and using it as material substitution or energy, he said.

The fourth challenge is improving the system of waste collection by the informal sector to ensure workers’ as well as environmental safety, he noted.

The fifth challenge is insufficient supply of feasible waste for recycling raw material, he pointed out. “Hence, we still need to import non-toxic waste in scrap,” he said.

Another problem is the lack of accurate data on waste, including on volume and location, as it is still being recorded partially, he added.

The Industry Ministry has initiated some programs to improve the management of industrial as well as domestic waste.

It is encouraging the upstream industry to produce polymer materials that can be recycled, supporting the development of the recycling industry, and the development of waste to energy.

“To accelerate waste processing in the green industry development, we need incentives, hence, many industries would be encouraged to participate. Currently, the ministry is formulating a mechanism to facilitate incentives for green industry,” Martono said.


Source: Antara News

Ministry’s team tasked with tackling NTT’s sea pollution and damage

Jakarta (ANTARA) – The Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (KKP), East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) government, and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), concurred on establishing a team for combating marine pollution and damage in the province’s waters.

“This is good synergy and commitment among the central government, the regional government, and the international non-government organization (NGO) in accelerating the handling of pollution in NTT,” acting Director General of Marine and Fishery Resources Supervision, Antam Novambar, noted in a press release here on Saturday.

Antam revealed that the three agencies had agreed on forming the team at a meeting on June 23.

Formation of the team is part of the implementation of the Arafura and Timor Seas Ecosystem Approach Phase II (ATSEA-2) Program.

The government has, in fact, mulled over the formation of the team since June 2020.

Antam noted that a series of technical meetings, facilitated by UNDP, were organized by involving agencies of the central and local governments, including the coordinating ministry for maritime affairs and investment, environmental affairs and forestry ministry (KLHK), Ministry of Transportation, and NTT officials.

“Hopefully, with this team, we would be able to respond quickly and accurately in handling pollution. This team will comprise elements of cross-sectoral offices of the local government with assistance from the central government,” he remarked.

KKP ministry’s Fisheries Supervisor, Matheus Eko Rudianto, noted that the team would swiftly be at the forefront in addressing various on-field problems.

The team will begin working by drafting an Action Plan for Pollution Control and Supervision.

“We will start by making preparations for the Action Plan. This will be the first pilot project for the region that has a pollution control scheme,” the ministry’s main expert explained.

Meanwhile, the KKP ministry’s Director of Supervision for the Management of Marine Resources, Halid K. Jusuf, emphasized that the regional government should prepare an instrument for controlling marine pollution.

“Regional regulations are required to strengthen pollution control and supervision,” Jusuf affirmed.

Source: ANTARA News

No workers held hostage after attack on Papua’s Yahukimo

It is true that Bingki Village is vacant after its residents took refuge over concerns of the armed terrorist group attacking the village again

Jayapura, Papua (ANTARA) – No residents and construction workers were held hostage by an armed Papuan terrorist group following Wednesday’s shooting at PT Crenoma’s truck in Bingki, Yahukimo, Papua, 172/PWY Military Resort Command Chief Brigadier General Izak Pangemanan confirmed.

The truck, carrying construction materials, was shot at on Wednesday evening, prompting the driver to turn back and save himself in Bingki Village, Pangemanan noted.

On Thursday, June 24, 2021, the armed terrorist group attacked Bingki and tortured four construction workers to death while they were constructing a house. Village chief Obaja Nang was also injured in the attack, he remarked.

Based on the report, local residents and workers constructing a bridge had fled their homes since June 24, 2021, shortly after the attack on Bingki, Pangemanan stated.

Some of the residents took refuge by using a motor boat and setting off on foot. Most residents, who travelled by motor boat, had arrived in Lokpon Dekai, he revealed.

“Those going on foot are still being monitored. We hope that they all would arrive in Dekai safely,” he stated.

Pangemanan noted that Bingki wore a deserted look after its residents fled over fears of another attack by the Tendius Gwijangge-led armed Papuan terrorist group.

“It is true that Bingki Village is vacant after its residents took refuge over concerns of the armed terrorist group attacking the village again,” he noted.

Commander of the Military District 1715, Lt Col Christian Irreuw, confirmed a report that unidentified gunmen had shot dead five civilians near Wit River in Pingki area, Yahukimo District, Papua Province, on Thursday.

One of the victims was identified as Pingki tribal chief Obaja, while four others were the employees of PT Papua Crenoma.

“It is true that an attack was launched on workers constructing a bridge in Pingki,” he informed ANTARA over the phone on Thursday night.

Source: ANTARA News